A friend of mine has just published a new book, called "The Silken Thread". It's not specifically about Jehovah's Witnesses but discusses how we are conditioned in childhood towards certain beliefs and making meanings as well as how to heal from a painful childhood and pursue a truly spiritual path. I highly recommend this to any ex-JW's who are struggling and finding it difficult to leave behind the powerful mind conditioning of the WTBTS.
Here's a link to the publisher's page in case any one is interested in ordering it online.
A Reader’s Comment: (me)
I read "The Silken Thread" at a time of great personal and spiritual crisis in my life. Following the author's journey through his painful childhood and the meanings he gave to his story, encouraged me to re-examine the major events of my own life and the self-defeating beliefs I had constructed from them. In doing so, I learned it is possible to heal the wounded meanings of a painful past. More importantly, I learned that it is also possible to transcend the making of meanings altogether and embark on a spiritual path where the future is bound only by our natural aptitudes and the limits that naturally occur in life.
The Silken Thread
by David Fisher; Cover Design or Artwork by Peggy Capek; Edited by Susan Fisher
274 pages; quality trade paperback (softcover); catalogue #03-2754; ISBN 1-4251-1599-3; US$19.13, C$22.00, EUR14.92, £9.89
We are meaning-makers. We are both enthralled and trapped by our own meanings and beliefs. The Silken Thread takes readers through this mystery to find healing and spiritual growth.
About the Book
A giant ball of gleaming straight pins threatened to kill the terrified eleven year old boy. Running in terror, he faced a barrier of thick, black cables. Somehow he knew safety lay in finding a silken thread lying concealed amid the cables. From this nightmare, the author's search for The Silken Thread became a life-long quest.
Many years later, the author realized the ball of pins was the terror of his mother and beliefs formed the barrier of cables keeping him separate and unhappy. The Silken Thread explores healing childhood's wounds and cultivating spiritual growth. The crucial issue addressed is how we give meaning to events and people, especially ourselves. As children we learn patterns of meaning-making. Some patterns, although once helpful, become self-defeating in adulthood.
Recognizing how we are enthralled and trapped by our meaning-making is essential to shifting self-defeating habits into self-enhancing ones. This is described as the Cycle of Healing. In embracing the cycle, we draw upon a range of capacities with which we were born.
These capacities are strands of The Silken Thread. They were never lost. Rather, they became subverted through our habits of meaning-making. The Cycle of Healing focuses on restoring aspects of our original self.
Even in healing, we continue to depend upon meanings. Spiritual growth takes us beyond the need for meaning to learning to be present to the immediacy of our experience. In being present, we recover The Silken Thread, a deep, abiding sense of connectedness within us.
About the Author
David lived as a child in England during the second world war. The combination of the war, a tyrannical mother and difficult boarding school experiences gave him a legacy of mistrust and self-doubt. The image of The Silken Thread arose in a nightmare at age eleven.
He served in the British Army and then the Canadian Army after emigrating to Canada in 1958. Searching for The Silken Thread was already a theme in his life when he worked for four years with the Innuit in the arctic. In 1970, he attended the University of Calgary. Despite self-doubt, he gained bachelors and masters degrees in Social Work. He then worked for two years as a volunteer in Malaysia with Canadian University Service Overseas and then taught at the University of Calgary until early retirement in 1990.
Only in 1981 as David began work on a doctorate in psychology did he shift his search for The Silken Thread from the external world to the internal. He became fascinated with the processes of meaning-making and the operation of belief and language in directing our lives. Through a combination of research, meditation and the study of eastern religions, David entered a period of healing and spiritual growth, which continues today.
David has two children, Petra and Adrian. He currently lives in Nanaimo, British Columbia, with his wife Susan. David continues to study the processes of meaning-making and uses this approach in counseling individuals and couples